Saturday, March 19, 2005

Peace Moves in the Reddest State

I just got back from an anti-war march and rally in downtown Salt Lake City, of all places.

Before heading downtown, I anticipated minimal turnout, maybe less than 50, but I was pleasantly surprised by an amount of people that was probably closer to 300. Along the march, many drivers constantly honked in support, while others held their hands out the windows making peace signs and cheering for us.

Granted, this was in Salt Lake City, which is one of the two most liberal areas in the state (the other being the environmentalist haven of Moab) and is represented in the House by a moderate Democrat who just won his first re-election. However, this also the headquarters of the LDS church, the religious organization which largely supports conservative stances on social and economic issues.

We did have the police following us around with video cameras, which was somewhat disconcerting, and one or two people that heckled us, but I was very pleased with how well we were received.

There were veterans' organizations, gay rights groups, feminists, union supporters, plenty of students, the elderly, small children, Christian pastors, musicians, and even some high schoolers that took part in the demonstrations. I'm looking forward to seeing the newspaper and evening news coverage of the events to see how the demonstrators are portrayed.

Does anyone else have stories to share of similar activities today?